If you are contemplating a claim because your solicitor has made a mistake, then you need to consider a number of important legal issues, and steps to take, that will have a direct impact on the process of suing a solicitor.
My solicitor has been negligent, what can I do?
This is usually the starting point of any negligence claim against a solicitor. Lawyers often refer to this as the 'breach of duty'. A solicitor will owe a duty of care to his clients. When that duty has been breached then negligence will follow. The solicitor's duty of care will vary from case to case according to the type of work being undertaken, the extent of the retainer and the experience of the client.When assessing whether a solicitor has been negligent it is common to compare the solicitor's conduct with the standard to be expected from a reasonably competent solicitor.
Has my solicitor messing up resulted in me suffering financial loss?
To sue your solicitor it is important to consider what financial loss has been suffered as a direct result of the solicitor's bad advice. In particular it is vital to determine whether or not the case falls within the ambit of the Small Claims Court. The small claims court limit is currently £10,000 (November 2018). If you go to a small claims court then only limited legal costs are likely to be recoverable. This means that it is generally uneconomic for the claimant to appoint a solicitor to handle the case. Where the value of the claim exceeds the small claims court limit the economics change due to the fact that legal costs are recoverable from the other side. This makes it more viable for solicitors to deal with the claim. And the greater the value of the claim, the more viable it is for solicitors to be retained.
It is also important to bear in mind that direct financial loss must be suffered. If there has been an intervening event that has caused the loss, or the loss would have been suffered even if the solicitor had not breached their duty of care, then the claim is likely to be prejudiced.
How to make a claim against a solicitor on a no win no fee basis
If your solicitor has let you down and you would like to pursue a claim on a no win no fee basis then we will be happy to assess your case, free of charge. In order for us to be able to take your case on under a no win no fee agreement we will need to establish that:
- your solicitor has acted in beach of their duty of care
- you have suffered financial loss as a direct result of that negligence
- the claim has a value that is above the small claims court threshold
If you feel that your case would be eligible for no win no fee funding then you are welcome to contact us for a free case assessment.
Call 0808 139 1595. Or send brief details of your case to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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